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Thu Nov 16, 2017, 09:50 PM

U.S. Rep. Takano, Tampa and St. Pete councils support closer U.S.-Cuba ties


Cuba Central ē October 21, 2017

On October 14, Representative Mark Takano (CA-41) became the first U.S. Member of Congress to visit Cuba in the aftermath of the State Departmentís announcement that it would shrink its diplomatic mission in Havana and reciprocally expel Cuban diplomats from the U.S. He is also the first Member of Congress to directly engage with Cuban officials in Havana since President Trumpís June announcement that he would instruct his administration to increase restrictions on trade with and travel to Cuba. Rep. Takano (in photo at top) traveled on a delegation organized by CDA to advance dialogue and mutual exchange between U.S. and Cuban LGBTQ communities.

At the same time, a delegation of City Council members from the Florida cities of Tampa and St. Petersburg were in Havana, the first such official trips by a council in either city. That members from the Tampa-St. Petersburg area, which is home to the third largest Cuban American population in the U.S. behind Miami and New York City, were willing to vote in favor of a trip to strengthen U.S.-Cuba ties shows how far support for engagement has come.

Following their trips, Rep. Takano and the chairs of both the Tampa and St. Petersburg City Councils all expressed dismay at recent cutbacks to diplomatic missions, and voiced their support for closer U.S.-Cuba ties moving forward.

The visits are a marker of how officials from our government should interact ó with a focus on mutual respect and collaboration.

More:
http://progresoweekly.us/u-s-rep-takano-tampa-st-pete-support-closer-u-s-cuba-ties/

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